La competitività italiana nel commercio internazionale

Translated title of the contribution: [Autom. eng. transl.] Italian competitiveness in international trade

Marco Fortis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


On the basis of various indexes, the author demonstrates that the Italian productive system has an outstanding position in various industrial sectors in the world economy. In particular, he identifies four sectors denominated the 4As (according to the initial letter of each Italian term: clothing - Abbigliamento-moda; home furniture - Arredo-casa; food - Alimentare-vini; automation - Automazione-meccanica-gomma-plastica). The 4As accounted for a balance of payments surplus which amounts to 100 billion euros. The author emphasises how a "declinist" interpretation is based on the declining share of total Italian exports in world export. Yet, this interpretation does not adequately take into account the strategy adopted by Italian firms that, in the last years, have changed their strategy towards higher value added production. This interpretation is confirmed by the comparison of competitiveness indexes elaborated by UNCTAD/WTO (TPI, Trade Performance Index) and by the Edison Foundation (Fortis-Corradini Index). The paper examines also the performances of italian exports during the first phase of the current global crisis. On the one hand, Italy has been affected by the crisis of global demand; on the other hand, the same diffuculties were experienced by Germany, and the Italian economy initially recovered more successfully. Finally, the paper suggests that prospects for growth of Italy in international trade, depends on greater access to BRIC markets; however, the Italian small/medium size forms find it more difficult obtain a foothold than large multinationals from the other European countries.
Translated title of the contribution[Autom. eng. transl.] Italian competitiveness in international trade
Original languageItalian
Title of host publicationEconomia come scienza sociale. Teoria, istituzioni, storia
Number of pages28
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • "4 A"
  • "4 F"
  • BRIC
  • BRICs
  • Italian market share in the world export of manufactured
  • Italian trade balance
  • Trade Performance Index
  • bilancia commerciale italiana
  • commercio internazionale
  • competitiveness
  • competitività
  • foreign trade
  • quote di mercato dell'Italia nell'export mondiale di manufatti
  • surplus manifatturiero
  • surplus manufacturing


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